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College holds gala dinner to celebrate 20 years of excellence

Al-Maktoum College has celebrated the milestone of delivering 20 years of education in Dundee with a dinner attended by former Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

Mr Brown was guest of honour at the gala event on Friday 3rd March when 120 guests from the worlds of education, politics and business attended the celebration at the Apex Hotel in Dundee.

Al-Maktoum College delivers a range of subjects including Masters and PhD courses in specialist business fields like organisational learning, law and sustainability and Islamic finance.

Mr Brown commended the work being done at Al-Maktoum saying it brought hope for a new generation and bridged a gap between cultures.

Mr Brown delivering his speech at the gala dinner.

The dinner came at the end of a two-day conference entitled Financial Environment for Refugees and Immigrant Communities: Islamic Finance in Action.

The conference, organised and hosted by the college, was attended by academics from across the world and set out to examine the financial gaps among Muslim refugee and immigrant communities and how Islamic finance can respond to this by creating financial inclusion and empowerment.

Mr Brown acknowledged the research and teaching in this field as being not just in Islamic finance but on ethics of economics and building a more sustainable economy.

Al-Maktoum college was the vision of the late Shaikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and UAE Minister of Finance. He wanted to see greater connectivity and understanding across people, cultures and communities, particularly between the Arab and Muslim worlds and the West. He wanted to put education and the promotion of intellectual exchange at the centre of the college strategy.

His Highness Shaikh Rashid Bin Hamdan Al-Maktoum has taken on the mantle from his father as the new patron of the college.

Head of College and Vice-Chancellor, Dr Abi Abubaker, said:

“We are extremely proud of what we have achieved over the last 20 years and we are particularly pleased to be part of the modern success story of Dundee.
“Over the years we have welcomed hundreds of students from dozens of countries around the world as well as giving many school pupils in the city their first steps towards higher education.
“We hope to increase the number of courses we offer over the coming years and to extend our partnerships with other universities.”

Head of College & Vice-Chancellor, Dr Abubaker.

Al-Maktoum College’s partnerships include collaborations with the University of Dundee to deliver three MSc Islamic Finance degrees and with Trinity College in Dublin on a MPhil in The Middle East in Global Context. The college has also launched several new Masters programmes and a PhD with Abertay University in areas including law and sustainability, moral economy, and organisational learning.

Chairman of the College, Mr Mirza Al-Sayegh, said:

“Promoting multiculturalism while building bridges between the Muslim and western worlds is our major goal but we also work hard to build bridges between the college and the local community and with businesses at every level.
“We believe we have a key role to play in establishing mutually beneficial relationships between countries like Dubai and Scotland.”

Around 2,000 students from more than 40 countries have graduated from Al-Maktoum College so far.